Cycling / Mountain Biking
Cycling is a great way of getting some exercise in. If you happen to also suffer with bad joints or arthritis it offers efficient, low-impact exercise that is easy on the joints and doesn't put too much pressure on knees, hips and backs. While providing a good cardiovascular workout it also strengthens leg and core muscles. The constant repetitive knee motion without the jarring impact helps to lubricate the joints and flushes out unwanted waste products from joints. So if your one of the many crohn's or colitis patients that suffers with bad joints then cycling is definitely something to consider.
No matter your experience level a good helmet is essential as there is always the possibility of a crash or tumble and you need to reduce the risk of a serious head injury. I would also recommend you incorporate some upper body work and not solely rely on cycling for your total exercise as light cycling while seated is relatively non-weight bearing and doesn't offer a lot in the way of upper body strength or bone density. You could try adding weights or boxing to your exercise program.
Why its Crohns and Colitis Friendly.
Its easy on the joints.
You can bring a change of clothes or other essentials. Just throw a small bag on your back and your all set to go.
Its flexible. Unlike a gym class you don't have to be there at a certain time. If you are feeling tired or just not feeling right you can put it off for a few hours and go whenever suits you best.
You can plan your route around public toilets or friendly bars and restaurants so you don't get caught short.
1. Start of slowly and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your cycles.
2. If you have bad joints and struggle mounting and dismounting your bike think about a unisex frame rather than a high frame bike.
3. If your up to it consider a mountain bike and head off road. You will get more of a cardiovascular workout and the views can be spectacular. Be aware it is harder on the joints compared to recreational biking on roads and footpaths
Consult your doctor before starting this or any other exercise program
Please use a helmet and if you are cycling in the evening make sure you have lights and a high vis top.
Always tell someone where you are going and what time to expect you back especially if you plan on cycling a long distance or are mountain biking off road.
Wearing earphones and listening to music while riding is one of those topics that divides the cycling community but if you decide you need to listen to music please pay extra attention to cars, pedestrians, other cyclists and any other hazards you may meet